Resources for Writing a Mystery

I’ve been researching mystery writing for the Cat and Mouse Adventure series (mainly because I am totally unhappy and unimpressed with the draft of Ghost at the Cemetery that I’ve written). I’ve discovered three websites that I want to add to my website. For two reasons, I want to be able to find the websites again, in the future, and because visitors to my website might benefit from them.

Frank Gruber’s “Fool-proof” 11 Point Formula for Mystery Short Stories

Classic 12-Chapter Murder Mystery Formula

Motives for Murder

Finish Your Manuscript

These days, many people want to write a novel. They talk about it. They may even plan it in their head. Others will go as far as making notes. Several of them will even open a blank document and start writing. But very few of them will finish the manuscript.

There’s no trick to finishing a manuscript. Except, perseverance and dedication. If you truly want to finish a manuscript, you will. There will be no excuses, distractions or hard luck stories that will stop you. You’ll want to sit and write, so you’ll find the time or make the time to do it. It’s that simple.

If you do make excuses, then maybe you don’t really want to write. Maybe the idea of writing is pleasing, but the actual hard work of writing isn’t for you. That’s for you to decide.

Yesterday, I wandered onto the site of Timothy Hallinan and found a page called Finish Your Novel. If you decide you do want to be writer, yet you’re having trouble getting the words down, then maybe the articles of Timothy’s website will help you.

Medieval Demographics Made Easy

It’s common for fantasy stories to have a medieval backdrop – castles, men (or women) on horseback and fire torches instead of battery operated torches. Of course, writers don’t have to use this setting. They can do whatever they want, because it’s fantasy! That’s the beauty of the genre.

Anyway, by accident I stumbled on a great resource for those of you who do have a medieval type world (like me). The page is called Medieval Demographics Made Easy and I believe it will help anyone get started on a world that is believable.

Varuna The Writers’ House

Varuna The Writers’ House is situated close to me, but I had never heard of it until today. I’ve spent some time today going through the awards, competitions and events and feel this website could be useful to me.

I have already put my name forward to be added to their mailing list. Unfortunately, they had the Sydney Writers’ Festival last weekend and the Sunday program was of interest to me, but I missed out which is a shame.

However, there is a short story program coming up that I’m thinking of submitting to. A selection of stories will be published in an anthology in 2011 in Scribe’s (not associated with me) New Australian Stories 2.0. I have to write a short story first!

Australian Writers Marketplace Online

All serious writers will eventually purchase a copy of their country’s writers marketplace. Most countries have them, as far as I’m aware, but they might have slightly different names.

Over the years, I’ve purchase a couple of these reference books. The first time I hardly used the book as I was over eager and purchased it too quickly. However, the fact that I had a copy sitting on the desk beside my computer often inspired me…and you can’t put a price on that. The second version I bought got a lot of use. There’s still post-it notes sticking out of it and pencil notations throughout the publisher section.

The only thing I have against these books is that they are 1) expensive (my last copy cost around $50), and 2) they are too soon outdated. I hate wasting money, but sometimes a writer really needs the information only found in these books.

So imagine my delight when I discovered the Australian Writers Marketplace Online website. Don’t be fooled, there’s no saving to be had here, but at least you’ll have access to up-to-date information.

It’s an option to remember for the future. 🙂

Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly – International Book & Bookselling News, Reviews, Bestsellers – is a website that acts as a news room for the publishing industry. Visitors to the site can see what’s happening, where it’s happening and to whom. I’ve seen articles about new publishers looking for submissions, indie authors cracking into mainstream publishing and the latest reviews on all types of books. There are also author interviews, helpful tips and the latest deals.

Resource Central Directory

As a writer I’m always looking for new resources, so when I came across this website I had to share it here.  The website is called Resource Central Directory – World Resources for All – Study, Learn, & Research.

This site is jam-packed with links to reference sites on a large variety of subjects; including coin collecting, volcanoes, pollution, crop circles, pyramids, astronomy, comets, ships, the railway, mythology, bee keeping, knot tying, sky diving and much more.